Outback Mayor Wins 'Trashy' Election

(AP) For Ed Warren, becoming mayor of the Australian Outback town of Winton was the luck of the draw from a trash can.

The cattle farming town famous as the birthplace of Australia's unofficial anthem "Waltzing Matilda" chose its new mayor late Wednesday by drawing a name from a trash can after local elections ended in a draw.

Warren said Thursday he was surprised by the unconventional approach used to break the 423-vote tie with rival candidate Butch Lenton.

"If I was prepared, I was going to say we'll toss for it," Warren told Australian Broadcasting Corp. radio.

Queensland state electoral laws allow for such ties to be decided by either the drawing of a name or tossing of a coin. Warren said a draw was used to choose the mayor in the city of Rockhampton eight years ago.

But some opposition state lawmakers argue the law should be changed to remove any "raffle stigma" from the office of mayor.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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